How To Cook Thai Food At Home
Since arriving from Pai, Thailand, in 2006, chef Nuit Regular and her restaurateur husband, Jeff, have made a huge impact on the food scene in Toronto. In a sea of formulaic Thai takeout joints, Nuit was one of the first to make authentic Northern Thai food with quality ingredients, a formula that led to a succession of popular restaurants — Sukhothai, Khao San Road, Sabai Sabai, Pai and Kiin — plus a dedicated following for her regional specialties like khao soi. Here, Nuit shares her go-to recipes and best advice for cooking Thai food at home.
Here’s a visual glossary of specialty Thai ingredients for the following recipes.
This dish has the nickname “drunken noodles” because it’s a favorite after-the-bar late-night snack in Thailand. The combination of sugar, soy and oyster sauce makes a perfect, crave-worthy sauce. This version is vegetarian, but it’s also delicious with sliced beef, chicken or shrimp.
Pandan leaves can be found at any Asian grocery store. If you’re having trouble finding dried butterfly pea flowers, they’re easy to buy online.
We asked Chef Nuit what she would recommend to someone who had never cooked Thai food before — and this was it. Simple and delicious, the toasted rice powder adds texture and a hint of nuttiness.
Curries vary in flavor, depending on their region of origin. This is the style of curry Nuit grew up with in the town of Phrae, in the northern area of Phrae province. If you’re a fan of green curry, you’ll never need takeout again.
The key to a good Tom Yum soup is using the freshest ingredients possible and finding the perfect balance of sweet, sour and salty. A mixture of sugar, lime juice and fish sauce is added to taste once the soup is taken off the heat.